PhD: Development of nanostructured composites with hard and soft magnetic phases

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Location : Limoges , France

Yearly income : 30 k€ gross salary


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Description of the offer :

Science des Procédés Céramiques et Traitements de surface (SPCTS) / University of Limoges (France) has an opening for a PhD position:

Dual pulsed laser vaporisation process dedicated to nanocomposites, Development of soft (Fe, Co, FeCo) in hard (NdFeB) magnetic nanocomposites.

Project background

The magnet’s energy product, which quantifies the work that it can do, is a key figure of merit for comparing magnets. Its value doubled every 12 years in the last century, due to the discovery of new hard magnetic phases with improved intrinsic properties and the development of appropriate microstructures through complex processing techniques. The emergence of Rare Earth –Transition Metal magnets has revolutionised the design of motors and generators. Particularly Nd-Fe-B based magnets are now of crucial importance for strategic value chains, in particular electric power generation (wind power, hydro power), transport (hybrid electric vehicles), and electronics (computers, mobile phones). No new magnetic phases having intrinsic properties better than those of Nd2Fe14B have been discovered, while the room temperature energy product achieved for NdFeB-based magnets is close to its theoretical limit. An approach to increase the energy product is to produce a nano-structured composite material that combines a hard-magnetic phase exchange coupled to a high magnetisation soft phase.

PhD project

The objective of the thesis is to examine the true potential of hard-soft nanocomposite materials for the development of magnets, with properties surpassing those of today’s high-performance magnets. For this purpose, the project will use tools of modern nanoscience (Free Cluster generator based on laser vaporisation & pulsed laser deposition) to produce thin film models of ultra-strong hard magnets based on exchange coupled soft-in-hard nanocomposites. During the thesis, the student will make structural & magnetic measurements @ Institut Néel and ESRF (Grenoble). The thesis will be in the frame of the ANR project “SHAMAN” in close collaboration with ILM (Lyon), ESRF & Institut Néel (Grenoble).


Master degree in physics, (nano)materials, or related field.

Contact and further information

Fréderic Dumas-Bouchiat: frederic.dumas-bouchiat@unilim.fr

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